A Baby Shower Diaper Donation for Food Bank

May 09, 2024  |  by Maggie Prendergast   |  

When Food Bank Junior Board member Julia Lichtenstein was planning her baby shower, she knew she wanted to give back to her community. So instead of having her guests bring gifts, she asked them to donate diapers to Food Bank For New York City instead. And the response was overwhelming – Julia's friends and family donated over 1,500 diapers, which she then dropped off at our Community Kitchen & Food Pantry in Harlem!  

To learn more about how Julia turned her private celebration into a celebration of giving back to families in our community, read our recent interview with her below!  

IMG_0819Julia and her newborn.

How long have you been involved with Food Bank and what inspires you to stay connected to our mission?   

I've been supporting Food Bank since my now husband did a fundraiser for his birthday many years ago. As I learned more about Food Bank over the years, I knew I wanted to become more actively involved, and I joined the Junior Board in 2023. I'm consistently amazed by the work Food Bank does to connect New Yorkers in need not only with necessary nutritious food but also critical services like tax preparation to get much needed refunds

Where did the idea for a diaper collection come from?   

Through my work on the Junior Board, I learned about the Woman to Woman campaign which, conveniently, was active during the same month I planned to hold my baby shower. I wanted to amplify the campaign's goal of connecting women with baby supplies, the cost of which can often be a strain on many households. 

Were any of your guests surprised to learn that Food Bank provides New Yorkers with resources like diapers?

Many of my guests did not realize that Food Bank accepts donations of hygiene products like diapers. I was excited to spread the word that Food Bank is not just about food! There are so many ways that the Food Bank works to empower every New Yorker to achieve food security for good.

Do you have any tips for New Yorkers looking to engage their communities in acts of giving like this?   

One of the best parts of working with Food Bank is how simple it can be to make an impact on the community. The guests at my baby shower collectively amassed 1,500 diapers and it was easy to do! Many of the products that Food Bank needs--like pantry staples or personal care products--only require a quick trip to the grocery or drug store. I took the donations uptown to Food Bank the next day and the diapers were distributed to clients right away. My diaper drive is just one example of the many easy ways New Yorkers can gather their communities to collect easy-to-find items and get them into hands that need them.   

What are some memorable moments you've had while serving with Food Bank?

One of my most memorable experiences was spending the day with Leslie Gordon, Food Bank’s President and CEO, and other Food Bank volunteers hearing from Leslie about her many years of work as a food banker and seeing firsthand the operations that keep Food Bank running. It was on that tour that Leslie mentioned that diapers could be among the most expensive personal care items that a household needs and can be a significant financial strain for parents with little ones at home. I did not have children at the time, but her remark stuck with me as I started to grow my family and I knew I wanted to help lighten that burden in whatever small way I could.   

And finally, what excites you most about motherhood?  Think we might get to meet the little one at a distribution someday?  

The most exciting thing about motherhood is watching your child start to see the world around them. Children bring a fresh sense of wonder and joy that those of us who have been here a bit longer sometimes lose sight of. I can't wait to bring my daughter to a Food Bank volunteer event when she is old enough! I hope to teach her from a young age the importance of being involved in the community around you and lending a hand in whatever way you can 

IMG_14041,500 Diapers were donated to Food Bank from Julia's Baby Shower.

We are so grateful for Julia’s generosity and her contribution to families in New York City. Interested in getting involved? Food Bank can help you make an impact on your special day. Click here to launch your own fundraiser for Food Bank

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